Category Archives: Other

The synergies between GNSS and Earth Observation

Synergies between GNSS and Earth Observation provide real-time information about the state of the Earth’s troposphereSpeaking at a dedicated session entitled “Applications: Earth Sciences and Geo-Information”, part of EUREF’s annual symposium, representatives of the mapping and surveying sector discussed the various synergies between GNSS and Earth Observation and their use for providing real-time information about the state of the Earth’s troposphere.

EUREF, the International Association of Geodesy (IAG) Reference Frame Sub-Commission for Europe, is dedicated to the definition, realisation and maintenance of the European Geodetic Reference Systems. Included in this mission is the development and maintenance of the EUREF GNSS Permanent Network (EPN), which is a ground-based GNSS infrastructure for scientific and practical applications in positioning and navigation. EUREF provides standards and guidelines to European National Mapping Authorities in order to harmonise the definition and adoption of national coordinate reference systems. Read more…

Interview with O. Montenbruck and P. Teunissen, editors of Handbook on GNSS

O. Montenbruck and P. TeunissenOliver Montenbruck (left picture), Head of the GNSS Technology and Navigation Group at DLR’s Space Operations Center and Peter Teunissen have edited an exhaustive reference work, the Springer Handbook of Global Navigation Satellite Systems, which brings together international experts to provide a state-of-the-art description of all facets of Global Navigation Satellite Systems.

Besides the obvious things, like navigation software in our cars and smart phones, which service or tools we use in our daily life, would not be possible without GNSS and would be deeply missed?
Peter Teunissen: GNSS radio occultation measurements provide important input for near-real-time weather forecast.
Oliver Montenbruck: Complex power grids and even stock exchanges would not work well without GNSS timing. Read more…

Handbook on GNSS published by Springer

Springer Handbook of Global Navigation Satellite Systems

Springer Handbook of Global Navigation Satellite Systems

The Springer Handbook of Global Navigation Satellite Systems is now available.

Described as “A state-of-the-art description of GNSS as a key technology for science and society at large,” the 1,327-page tome is edited by Peter J.G. Teunissen and Oliver Montenbruck.

Teunissen is a professor of Geodesy and Satellite Navigation at Curtin University, Australia, and Delft University of Technology (TU Delft), the Netherlands.

Montenbruck is head of the GNSS Technology and Navigation Group at the DLR’s German Space Operations Center, Oberpfaffenhofen, and chair of the Multi-GNSS Working Group of the International GNSS Service. Read more…

Consortium records scintillation on Galileo signals in Antarctica

Septentrio PolaRx5

Septentrio PolaRx5

At the end of 2016, the DemoGRAPE consortium observed, for the first time ever, ionospheric scintillations on Galileo signals in Antarctica, using Septentrio’s PolaRx5S GNSS reference receiver.

DemoGRAPE investigates improvement of high-precision satellite positioning with a view to developing scientific and technological applications in Antarctica. At higher latitudes, GNSS signal degradation due to ionospheric activity is more pronounced.

The more precise phase-based positioning modes are particularly vulnerable to ionosphere disturbance such as scintillations. Elevated ionospheric activity can cause a loss of precise-positioning mode or, in more extreme cases, a total loss of signal lock. Read more…

The GSA takes up its responsibilities for Galileo

GSA HQ in Prague

GSA HQ in Prague

By Carlo des Dorides*:

July 1, 2017 is an important date for both the European GNSS Agency (GSA) and for the Galileo programme. Following a six-month handover phase that began on January 1st, as of July 1st the GSA officially takes responsibility for overseeing the operations and service provision for Galileo – a responsibility that includes ensuring a return on investment from Galileo in the form of across-the-board services and applications.

Our journey began three years ago when the European Commission issued Regulation 1285, stating that the Galileo exploitation phase was to start in 2016 and delegating the responsibility for overseeing this key phase to the GSA. Last year’s Declaration of Initial Services and the awarding of the Galileo Service Operator (GSOp) contract marked the official transition of Galileo from a testing phase to a system in service – and were the first concrete steps taken by the GSA in our new role. Read more…

Winners of the European Inventor Award 2017 – Radio signals for better satellite navigation

Galileo_team_EIA17Space-based radio navigation positioning has made significant strides in recent decades. It is now poised to make a greater leap thanks to Galileo, Europe’s global navigation satellite system (GNSS). Signalling technology developed by a team of European engineers not only helps Galileo deliver better accuracy and clear up signal clutter; it also pushes satellite navigation and its features to the next level.

A European team, led by French engineer Laurent Lestarquit and his Spanish colleague José Ángel Ávila Rodríguez and including German Günter Hein and Belgian Lionel Ries, has a unique specialism: sending clear signals from space. A virtual cacophony of radio frequencies is sent down to earth from the more than 50 navigation positioning satellites currently in orbit – including those of the US-led Global Positioning System (GPS), Russia’s Global Navigation Satellite System (GLONASS) and more recently Europe’s Galileo system. This team has helped ensure that signals do not interfere with each other, and that users and developers alike will be able to profit from the next-generation positioning technology that Galileo offers.

The team’s contribution of modulation and spread-spectrum signal technologies forms one of the joint European satellite positioning system’s core components, delivering signals that enhance accuracy, save on satellite power and ensure interoperability with GLONASS and the current GPS and its possible upgrades. Read more…

Webinar – Galileo and the future of SatNav

Today’s Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) market is huge. Growing demand for precise location information on smartphones and other hardware has seen GNSS technology embedded in 5 billion devices around the world – a figure that is expected to grow to 8 billion by 2020.

In this Webinar, “Galileo and the future of SatNav: drones, smart cities and self-driving cars” (June 13, 5pm CET), the GSA (European Global Navigation Satellite Systems Agency) will review the market – revealing findings from the latest edition of the GSA’s GNSS Market Report – and provide insight on global trends and future developments. In particular, the webinar will explore: Read more…

Galileo signal team nominated for invention award

Jose_Angel_Avila_Rodriguez_(left)_and_Laurent_Lestarquit_(right)The engineering team behind the signal technology underpinning Europe’s Galileo satellite navigation system has reached the final of this year’s European Inventor Award, run by the European Patent Office.

The team is led by Spanish engineer José Ángel Ávila Rodríguez – now part of ESA’s Galileo team – and his French colleague Laurent Lestarquit from France’s CNES space agency.

The team also includes German Günter Hein, formerly head of the department studying the evolution of EGNOS and Galileo for ESA, as well as Belgian Engineer Lionel Ries, now in ESA’s technical directorate, as well as French CNES engineer Jean-Luc Issler. Read more…

GSA launches 2017 GNSS Market Report

GNSS_market_report_2017_issue5In the fast evolving world of satellite navigation technology and GNSS applications, monitoring the landscape and having the latest information is essential. With its in-depth look at market opportunities and trends across eight market segments, the GSA’s 2017 GNSS Market Report is a key resource for successfully navigating this exciting market.

The growing demand for precise location information, in combination with the ongoing evolution of GNSS technology, means that today’s GNSS market is bigger than ever. According to the 5th edition of the GSA’s popular GNSS Market Report: Read more…

IGS 2017 workshop

IGS 2017 workshopThis year, the IGS (International GNSS Service) Workshop will feature a special keynote lecture on the Galileo system, given by Marco Falcone of the European Space Agency (ESA). The keynote will address the current status of the now 18-satellite constellation, with special focus on the commissioning of the last four satellites, which were launched in November 2016. Overall system performance will also be discussed, including availability of signal in space, satellite ranging, positioning, and associated availability at the user level. Falcone will address timing performance with regard to Galileo System Time in contrast to UTC as well as GPS to Galileo Time Offset. He will also discuss the mission recovery of the GSAT201 and 202 satellites in elliptical orbit, plans for GSAT104 usage, satellite production, and the path ahead to full operation capaability. Read more…